Queer Voices

Screenwriter Abdi Nazemian Says Hollywood Films Are A 'Very Sad Depiction Of Gay Culture'

While the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community has certainly seen more representation in Hollywood cinema over the past 10 years, one screenwriter isn't so sure the exposure has been a good thing.

Hollywood screenwriter Abdi Nazemian wrote an op-ed late last year to discuss the ways in which he was disappointed by films like "Dallas Buyers Club" and "Philadelphia." He spoke with HuffPost Live about why he thinks Hollywood has failed in its representation of gay men.

"Personally, I think the depiction of gay men in Hollywood is horrible," Nazemian said. "In the 'Dallas Buyers Club' and 'Philadelphia,' part of what I wrote about is there's this idea of a straight savior. In both cases, the lead character is not only a straight man, but a homophobic straight man who saves the day and saves gay men."

He said many of these films fail to honor how the gay community mobilized itself with little help from the straight community when the AIDS epidemic was in full swing. For Nazemian, featuring straight homophobic characters as the lead is misleading.

"There’s an assumption on the part of the filmmakers that viewers need a homophobic character as a point of entry and I don’t think that's true anymore. And of course there are other narratives -- I mean, now HBO made 'The Normal Heart,' which is a great counter-narrative to those. So there is great stuff being done, but when you look at it on a whole, especially in feature films, I think it’s a very sad depiction of gay culture."

Watch the full conversation with Abdi Nazemian below:

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